Bill would let Utahns in crisis temporarily restrict their own gun purchases

(KCPW News) A proposal that would allow a person to temporarily restrict their own ability to buy a gun has advanced at the state legislature.

House Bill 282 by Lehi Republican Rep. Cory Maloy would allow someone to voluntarily put themselves on a list that would prevent them from buying a gun for at least 30 days.

Rep. Maloy said the measure was in part intended to help address Utah’s high rate of suicide; the state has one of the highest rates of suicide mortality in the nation.

“As we all know suicide is a problem here in Utah as well as across the country, and so this is a bill to look for ways for people to voluntarily help themselves without infringing upon our Second Amendment rights,” Malloy told members of the House Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Committee on Wednesday.

After the 30-day waiting period, a person could request to have their name removed from the restricted list, and all records showing a person had been added to that list would be destroyed by the state Bureau of Criminal Identification.

The bill is a counterpart to Utah’s safe harbor law, which allows a person who already owns firearms to turn them into police if they are experiencing a crisis.

HB282 passed the committee Wednesday on a 6-1 vote and now heads to debate in the full House.

If you or someone you know is at risk of self-harm, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline offers 24-hour help at 1-800-273-8255.